Located on the outskirts of Visakhapatnam, Thotlakonda Hill is best known for a 2,000-year-old Buddhist complex. Sprawling over an area of 120 acre, the complex is a protected monument that attracts tourists from all parts of the country. The archaeological excavations conducted here revealed a number of relics including 16 votive stupas, 11 rock-cut cisterns, stoned pathways, circular chaitya-grihas, votive platforms, viharas, a mahastupa, a dining hall and a kitchen complex with three halls. Several sculptures, silver coins belonging to the Satavahana period (1st century BCE- 2nd century CE), miniature Buddha Padas or models of Buddha's feet were also discovered during the archaeological excavations. The Buddhist complex overlooks the sea and once served as the residential and academic complex for Buddhist monks. Perched at an altitude of 128 m above sea level, Thotlakonda Hill is not only an idyllic stop for Buddhists but also attracts scores of nature lovers for its peaceful environment and picturesque landscape.

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